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Won't You Show Me the Way to Scotland's 'Penis Island'?

Illustration for article titled Wont You Show Me the Way to Scotlands Penis Island?

Due to a slight translation typo, the sign greeting visitors arriving via ferry to Scotland’s Bute Island declares, “Welcome to the beauty of Penis Island.” Yes, please send over some literature from your tourism bureau, thank you very much.


The Scotsman reports that a Gaelic speaker recently spotted the sign, which transforms Bute (Bhòid) to penis (Bhoid). It’s a simple error that makes a significant difference:

Àdhamh Ó Broin, a native dialect campaigner and Gaelic coach for the TV series Outlander, said: “It’s meant to be the genitive case, not the genital case. A genitive case is when one noun follows another and its form changes. Bhòid is Bute but Bhoid is penis. You would need the accent over the ‘O’. It says ‘Welcome to the doorway to the beauty of Penis Island’.”


“I’m a native Gaelic speaker and I’ve seen wrong spellings before but I was gobsmacked,” said Coinneach Combe, the native Gaelic speaker who spotted the error. “It’s quite widespread. There’s a similar problem with the Gaelic word for festival – fèis. Without the accent it means ‘sex’.”

Those damned accent marks will get you every time.

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Photo via Getty.

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Penis, accents AND an island??? Count me in..